Method of Locating Unexploded Ordnance
Agency / Branch:
DOD / USAF
Unexploded Ordnance (UXO) contaminated areas range from military training facilities here at home to the battlefield located in foreign lands, this UXO poses threats to both civilian and military personnel alike. To help Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) teams locate and extract UXO, Williams-Pyro, Inc., is developing the Dynamic Remote Ordnance Identification and Detection (DROID) system, which comprises rugged, secure, and low-power active RFID tags and portable tag readers. Tags are affixed to ordnance before deployment and the tag reader, which supports UAV, handheld, or wheeled vehicle deployment, is flown/driven in a search pattern to locate the ordnance. Specialized algorithms use data collected from the tag reader to accurately determine the location of the UXO from ranges of up to 100 meters while the ordnance is buried up to 10 feet in the ground. The key technologies being developed during this effort include a survivable tagging technology and ordnance attachment method for the MK-80 series bombs to survive the extreme impact forces, accurate UXO location algorithms, and UXO location logging software. In Phase I, we proved the feasibility of this technology, and in Phase II we plan to create a rugged prototype and evaluate its performance in a realistic environment. BENEFIT: The issue with existing technologies is they employ sensors that must cover nearly every square inch of land. In addition, studies indicate that as few as 10% of UXO located using methods based on magnetic technology are actually UXO and not false readings. Williams-Pyro's proposed technology will greatly improve the speed and accuracy at which an area can be cleared of UXO while offering significant cost reduction. Our long-range tagging technology will allow much larger regions to be searched in much shorter times. Using our tag-based technology, where a tag is attached to the bomb body and remains with the bomb, false detections are nearly, if not completely, eliminated. This technology is also applicable to training facilities for clearing live or intentionally inert bombs dropped during training exercises. More area will be searched in the same time and at lower cost, speeding remediation and making it safer for people living near these areas as well as protecting the environment. Additional military applications include locating land mines and retrieving unattended ground sensors. Commercial use of this technology may include locating buried utilities components, such as pipes and valves.
Small Business Information at Submission:
200 Greenleaf St. Fort Worth, TX 76107
Number of Employees: